Business schools have different cultures, just like the branches of the military do.  Teamwork is at the heart of Kellogg's culture, which makes Kellogg a great fit for veterans. The Kellogg Veterans Association is here to help you put your best self forward in your application.

If you're considering Kellogg, please reach out to us--especially if you plan to visit the campus. We can give you a candid perspective of the school, help you prepare your application, arrange for you to attend the classes you're interested in, and coordinate meeting professors who can help answer your questions. We might also be able to arrange for you to stay with a current KVA students so you don't have to stay in a hotel. Please give us a head's up about two weeks before you arrive, so we can prepare a great visit for you. See the Sofas for Soldiers information block below for more information.



Shai Gordon Brad Sam Kevin  
Shai LaBelle Trop Gordon Shu Brad Meissen Sam Drake Kevin Spring Max Brodin  
International US Army US Air Force US Navy US Marine Corps US Coast Guard  




Please note the following concerning the waiver of the application fee ($250)

The Kellogg School will grant an application fee waiver for candidates on active duty military status or U.S. military veterans who have been on active duty within three years of applying. Candidates who qualify for an application fee waiver must submit a formal request via e-mail and provide supporting evidence of their military status. Military applicants should submit a copy of a valid military ID card or Form DD-214 to verify active duty status within three years of applying.  




Essays There's no standard approach to essays because the point is to be absolutely authentic. But all good essays have these key ingredients:

Reflection  Reflect on your most defining experiences and articulate how they impacted you and what you learned about yourself. Great accomplishments are great (and should be mentioned), but they don't set you apart from the ten thousand other really accomplished applicants. Kellogg admissions really wants to hear more about you than your accomplishments. Elaborate on the journey and focus on how your experiences define who you are today. (By the way, this applies equally to failures--which often make for great stories as well).

Vision  Provide a compelling vision for the future. Don't be grandiose or use flowery language. Do be articulate and logical. Do dream big (our motto is Think Bravely... your vision should live up to that standard). Use your past experiences to lay the foundation for your vision. There should be a direct link between something in your past and your vision for your future, so the reader understands why you're motivated by this vision.

Authenticity  This is the most important ingredient. Be as candid as possible. Demonstrate your self-awareness and emotional intelligence through great "character-based" stories. "Character-based" stories don't just describe the circumstances, but they describe people's emotions, thoughts, motivations, passions, etc... and they show that you understand people (including yourself). This speaks volumes about your ability to work on a team, which is exactly what Kellogg admissions wants from us. This will require a lot of reflection, so start writing early.


Interview This is an exercise in storytelling, so everything recommended above (in the essays section) applies here as well. Additionally, you should be aware of these points:

Kellogg interviews every candidate because we emphasize our ability to communicate effectively and be socially adept. The interviewer will evaluate you on whether they would like to go to school with you, be on a team with you, and work with you. Keep that in mind as you're interacting with your interviewer. 

Your interviewer will probably not have read your essays. So feel free to recycle those stories, BUT make sure you're answering the question that is asked. Do not recite a canned story that almost answers the question. Your interviewer is evaluating your ability to communicate in a personal setting just as much as the content of your story.

Your interviewer is unlikely to have been in the military and may ask a lot of questions about the military. Remember this interview is about you, not about the military. Avoid elaborating on military culture and always drive the story back to you as an individual. 


Recommendations First, don't just get the highest ranking officer you know to write you a recommendation--because it means nothing if it's impersonal. Your recommenders should have worked with you on a frequent basis. Direct supervisors and peers make great recommenders, although subordinates are usually inappropriate. Consider using recommenders from different points in your career to show consistent personal growth over time (i.e., one from your first assignment and one from a more recent assignment). Discuss your essays with them. They should understand the story that you're trying tell in your essays, so the recommendations and essays are complementary. Do provide anecodotal support as needed, but do not tell your recommender what to write. 


Resume We have posted some of our resume bullets for you to view. Use them as an example on how to translate military experience into resume bullets that are appropriate for a business school application.


Air Force Intelligence Officer

  • Directed sensitive intelligence operations during 24/7 operations; oversaw the training, schedule, and operations of eight mission directors and 100 analysts and technicians.
  • Designed training program to increase analyst proficiency and team morale. Increased proficiency allowed for 20% reduction in personnel without any mission degradation.


Air Force Acquisitions Officer

  • Managed $600k budget and identified software requirements, solicited proposals from aerospace corporations, and awarded contracts for software used to plan combat missions.
  • Planned bi-annual conferences in Atlanta, GA, bringing together 285 military officials and design experts from aerospace corporations to collaborate on the future of the technology.
Army Infantry Officer
  • Served as trusted advisor to an Iraqi Army officer four grades my senior and in command of 750 soldiers. Created training and logistics systems resulting in unit achieving highest possible rating
  • Mentored Iraqi businesses to address population’s critical needs; resulted in rebuilding of water system for 25,000 people, construction of two schools, and city’s representation in government
Army Armor Officer
  • Analyzed data from multiple intelligence sources and identified trends that enabled the capture of six insurgents
  • Led a five member multi-disciplinary team as the most junior officer to plan radio architecture conversion, which resulted in savings of over $4 million
  • Created a Basic Training Troop on a condensed timeline by empowering a high performance team of 25 instructors, which resulted in the best graduation rate (99%) out of six troops
Marine Corps Infantry Officer
  • Led, supervised and evaluated 40 professionals in a dynamic, stressful and remote environment  
  • Conducted over 50 meetings with and consulted prominent village leaders about their concerns leading to greater trust and improved relationships between the Afghans and Americans
  • Advised and mentored Afghan National Army chief operating officer leading 700 professionals during a seven month deployment. Efforts led to the group’s first of several independently planned and executed operations
Marine Corps Artillery Officer 
  • Planned and conducted 25 patrols and two major operations during the Iraq War “Surge” greatly reducing insurgent activity and improving security for the population while suffering no casualties
  • Developed and executed fire support plan for two joint exercises with Jordanian and Kuwaiti Armies during live-fire exercises involving over 2,000 indirect fire munitions
  • Integrated new techniques to deliver fire support assets including a new digital system never before used in the operating forces enhancing the ability to coordinate and deliver fire support assets


Navy Fighter Pilot 

  •      Led $1.6B F/A-18 training program consisting of 40 fighter aircraft and 600 personnel
  • ·     Successfully led 56 enlisted Marines and Sailors in the maintenance of $720M+ in aircraft and associated systems resulting in a 60% increase in work center productivity                             
  • ·     Awarded Navy Achievement Medal for the development and execution of complex missile shoot, overseeing $1B in assets utilizing innovative missile firing scenarios to expand Naval tactical doctrine


Navy Surface Warfare Officer Coming Soon!!!
GPA Your undergrad is behind you, so let it go. If you have a sub-median GPA, that's okay. Half of us are in the same boat. But if you have specific weaknesses in quantitative subjects (e.g., calculus, statistics, finance), consider taking a community college course so you can demonstrate your ability to handle the coursework.

GMAT Scoring at the median or above is great, but scoring below the median shouldn't discourage you. The bottom line is that you need to prove you're a smart person who can handle the quantitative rigor of business school--so the admissions committee considers the GMAT along with your GPA to determine your academic preparedness. It's okay to take this exam more than once if you don't reach the median the first time--but consider taking a prep course before you take the GMAT for the second time.  After you're satisfied with your score, don't continue taking the test. At this point, it's really much more important to focus on the qualitative portions of the application--as demonstrated in essays and the interview (think of the GMAT as a key to getting your foot in the door, but the essays and interview will get you on the dance floor). Fortunately, the qualitative portions are also where many veterans excel--and we can offer the most assistance with those.


CLASS OF 2015 & 2016 PROFILE 

In case you're wondering how the vets of 2015 & 2016 stack up, we've included the most recent KVA Employment Report.





Veteran applicants and admitted students who are planning to visit campus may be able to stay with a current KVA student. We hope this defrays some of the cost of visiting campus while also giving you a more authentic Kellogg experience, so you can make a well informed decision when choosing business schools. Please email Sam Drake or Gordon Shu at least two weeks before you plan to arrive. Of course we cannot guarantee there will always be an available couch, but we'll do our best to help out fellow vets.